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I recently applied to an executive master, and prior to accepting the offer, I discussed it briefly with my employer, who seems supportive.

I didn't get the class schedule until closer to September and part of the schedule indicated a couple full friday per month, for 2 years. That seems like a lot of work days to me to be missing.

I brought it up with the school (since previously they told me it would be Friday afternoon to evening, not 9-5 work schedule on Friday), and they replied that I was the only one in the class who has indicated to have problem with this. (I don't know if I have a problem even, it just feels like a lot if I think from the employer perspective, so much that I feel uncomfortable to bring it up).

I know executive masters have always exist, and the condition is that, I must maintain a full time work scheudule to complete it, but I have never worked with someone who's done an executive master. I wonder what the general workplace acceptance is about these things? And if my employer has problems, how and what I should suggest as an alternative?

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    You said you discussed briefly which doesn't sound like you fully discussed this. If you really want it you should bring it up fully, honestly, and up front about what exactly you're expecting from your employer and exactly what you need to do. They need to be on board in writing, preferably. The others in your class may have done this already prior to applying. – Dan Sep 1 '16 at 16:47
  • I've looked at several eMBA programs over the past couple years. They almost all have a program that includes 9-5 every other Friday or a program that involves 1/2 days and takes twice as long. Are you sure you didn't research the latter and apply to the former? – Chris G Sep 15 '16 at 23:33
  • "I recently applied to an executive master ..." -- I wasn't familiar with that phrase until I looked it up (it's a kind of MBA). You might consider adding a brief explanation in case I'm not the only ignorant one. – Keith Thompson Sep 16 '16 at 0:37
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I discussed it briefly with my employer, who seems supportive.

When you go back to talk to your employer, remind them of your previous conversation and thank them for their earlier show of support. Then bring up the fact that you now have a concrete schedule that requires your absence 2 Fridays days/month. Offer to make up the time in 1 or a variety of ways:

  1. Work longer hours the rest of the month
  2. Take vacation, as suggested by a previous post
  3. Take a pay cut commensurate with your decreased hours (similar to a previous suggestion of unpaid time off).

Or try any combination of the above. Take your top pick of suggestions, one that you can live with for 2 years, and offer that one to your employer first. If it's a no-go then have the others in your back pocket as alternatives. Just don't forget to open the conversation by reminding them of their previous show of support.

If they value you as an employee they'll work with you. It's a lot easier to work with a current good employee than to have to hire another one.

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First off, tell your employer that you were the only one in the class with thios schedule and the school, unilaterally changed the class schedule, requiring you to attend 2 full day Fridays per month. They might be sympathetic. If not, suggest taking all your vacation days for those Fridays and when you run out of them, you will take them as unpaid time-off.

If your employer is not good with this situation, you might want to try your chance at another school in the next enrollment season or just quit your job and find new employment

  • They didn't "change the schedule," he just didn't know about the schedule (and didn't ask earlier). Executive MBAs usually have Friday commitments IME. – mxyzplk says reinstate Monica Sep 2 '16 at 2:08
  • according to OP, there was an expectation of Friday afternoons and evenings for the class times. Now it is full day Fridays. If OP reflected this initial expectation to his/her employer, yes it is a CHANGE of schedule, even though it is officially not a change by the school's terms. – MelBurslan Sep 2 '16 at 18:57
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Probably the employer will have problems because they are hiring you to work for them not to upskill elsewhere so you can then take your improved contribution to another employer.

If they have problems, and you value this course, then offer them what employers value: time.

Say you'll give them another X years of your life, after the course is finished, and if they want more assurance or if you want to provide that, make it a locked in offer by adding the same amount of time to a non-compete.

You're threatening them by improving your self and going elsewhere, so reassure them that they've got you by the privates, and they'll be happy.

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